|"Breakfast-goers at the Fair," wc, 3.5x5.5|
Mornings at the Fair start best with breakfast in one of the concessions. There are those who swear by cinammon rolls and coffee, but fair time calls for eggs. And sausage, or bacon, and hash browns, and yes, biscuits and gravy. Most of those who work and exhibit for the eleven days of the Fair often breakfast in one or another of the tents, and everyone gets to know one another. There's something old-time about coming onto the grounds, having a farmer's breakfast, and then tramping through the animal barns and exhibitions. Yesterday morning I saw a couple who are great representatives of the Fair, and of Iowa, having the morning coffee. His ten-gallon hat isn't the usual headwear for men (that would be a "gimme cap") but certainly recalls old times.
|"In the Discovery Garden," ink, 5x8|
Although it wasn't really hot, the shaded area south of the Administration Building was my next stop for drawing. The area is shaded by dozens of mature trees that spread a cool darkness over the entire grounds encompassing the Bill Riley Stage, named for the man who emceed more than fifty years of talent shows at the Fair. The stage is open-air and permanent, with surrounding permanent seating. Even if there is no show going on it's a natural gathering place, behind a long row of food booths on three sides. So I spent a profitable period of time there on a bench alongside one of the paths that wind through, watching people walk by. As in the sketch above, for this one I sketched the fixed items--tree, food booth, path--and then added the figures as they came along. This kind of sketching exercise is great fun and gives a lot of memory practice, since nobody holds still at all. Catching the gesture is everything, which adds a lot to the fun.
The Fair ends in a few days, but I'll continue visiting and sketching and posting for the next two or three days, until other subjects beckon. More Fair fun to come!